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of public schools in the Republic was 3,056, instructed by 5,856 teachers (2,322 men and 3,534 women), with an attendance of 259,695 pupils. The number of private schools was 754, served by 2,051 teachers, with an aggregate attendance of 38,842, making in all 3,810 schools and 298,537 pupils.
The annual increase in the number of schools can be judged from the fact that two years previous, in 1887, there were only 2,271 public schools in the Republic, which gives an average increase of 400 public schools per year. The number of private schools, on the contrary, does not show any increase, but rather a decline in their number (the number of private schools in 1887 was 757)—the best proof that can be given of the efficiency of the public school system, an efficiency also shown by the annual increase in attendance, which is about 50,000 pupils.
There are three different degrees of public schools: Schools for children, elementary, and graduated schools, on a plan similar to that adopted in Massachusetts, their course of studies being also similar to the course of studies of the public schools of that State.
In 1887, there were thirty-four normal schools in the Republic, of which thirteen were for men, fourteen for women, and seven for both sexes. From the normal schools, are graduated the teachers for the public schools, their course of studies lasting five years.
Although some of the public schools are still located in private residences, the great majority of them have buildings constructed at the expense of the national or provincial governments. They have been made after designs of the best school buildings of Europe and North America. In the city of Buenos Aires alone $10,000,000 was expended in the construction of school buildings from 1882 to 1888.
The higher education, which is free and open to all, begins in the national colleges, of which there are about twenty. The course of studies in the national colleges is so extensive as to cover a
period of six years, during which time the pupil is prepared to
of the national universities, where another course of six years must be undergone before graduating as a doctor, lawyer, or engineer. There are no private institutions which confer degrees for the practice of the liberal professions, and all foreign graduates of colleges wishing to practice in the Argentine Republic must submit to an examination in Spanish before the authorities of the universities, which examination must be approved by the said authorities before granting the diploma that authorizes the applicant to practice his profession.
There are two universities, one in Buenos Aires and the other in the city of Cordoba. Both are divided into three faculties, to wit: Faculty of law, faculty of medicine, and faculty of engineering.
Besides the regular annual examinations, the regulations of the two universities demand that, before granting degrees to its students, these students must pass a final “general examination of all matters comprised in the course of studies they have undergone, and, also, they must present written essays on a subject relating to the profession they have adopted. By the appointment of efficient professors, the adoption of a comprehensive course of studies, and strict examinations, the National Government manifests its desire that those entering into the exercise of the liberal professions shall be properly prepared for the work demanded of them.
During the administration of Gen. Sarmiento, the military and the naval academies were founded, and all the officers of the army and navy graduate from these academies, which are similar to the military and naval academies of the United States. There also exists an academy of military engineers, from which are graduated all the officers who compose the corps of military engineers.
In San Juan, there is an academy of mining engineers, and an important school of agriculture, of which there are several in the Republic. There are also a number of schools where boys are taught useful trades, special schools for the deaf and dumb, etc.
The activity in the field of literature can be judged from the fact that in the city of Buenos Aires about one thousand new books are published yearly. Of their merits, an idea may also be had from the fact that so many Argentine writers received prizes at the late Paris Exhibition. There are several important literary associations in the Republic, prominent among which is the “Ateneo Nacional,” of Buenos Aires, its membership and its aims betng similar to those of the “Authors' Club,” in New York City.
There being no line drawn between the political and literary classes, they may be said to form but one class. All those desiring to figure in public life must begin by showing what they are capable of accomplishing, and the best way to do so is to write on some topic of general interest, deliver a speech, or publish a book. Thus it is that by many the field of literature is trodden only to reach the political arena, which is always open to those who have distinguished themselves through their writings.
Journalism is the most prominent feature of Argentine literary activity, and one that every day increases its influence and betters its quality, owing no doubt to the development of new interests and the liberty which the press has enjoyed. In 1881, only 165 newspapers and reviews were published throughout the country, while in 1890, the number had increasesd to 484, and in 1891, in the city of Buenos Aires alone, 204 newspapers and reviews were published. The best newspapers are of the same size as the American dailies, and their telegraphic service is most complete, publishing every day despatches from all over the world giving the most important news from every country.
Their corps of correspondents comprise men of such universal fame as Jules Simon, Camille Flammarion, Jules Claretie, Emilio Castelar, Arsene Houssaye, Perez Galdoz, etc., who send weekly letters on European events, in which, in most cases, they have played a personal part.
Although sufficient has been said regarding the diffusion of